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 Pretty fun Vita game, Destiny of Spirits (free to play)

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PostSubject: Pretty fun Vita game, Destiny of Spirits (free to play)   Fri May 02, 2014 10:08 pm

So I downloaded Destiny of Spirits recently because there are Gravity Rush characters in it (I'm mad at myself because the promo started April 3rd but I didn't start playing until the 30th because I forgot, and I was trying to juggle memory card space, so I only got 4/13 and can probably only get one more) and it's actually pretty fun! It's kind of like a mix of Monster Rancher or Jade Cocoon, and trading card games/Pokemon.

The core gameplay revolves around ATB battles where you can have up to three spirits on the field facing each other, and you can tap on them to redirect which enemy they attack whenever their ATB fills up. You can have two spirits in reserve that come onto the field once one of the active spirits dies, and the first spirit in your party takes a leader role and gives the team a passive bonus if they have a Support Skill (not sure what happens if the leader dies, haven't focused on that.) You can also rent support spirits from random users or friends, for a total of 6 potential spirits in your party (as far as I'm aware, enemy parties are locked to 5, but maybe bosses don't count so boss fights may have 6; again, haven't paid enough attention.) Note that parties are limited based on spirit costs, better spirits costing more points.

As battles progress, a skill gauge fills up and each spirit has a semi-unique skill (a lot of the effects are very samey) that they can perform if you tap on them and the button below the skill gauge. Keep in mind that using a skill wipes out their current ATB, so it's wise to use them them moment after their latest ATB fills up.

The goal of the game is to free the world from Chaos Spirit control. The Vita looks at your real location and sets your quadrant on the map as a home base, which you do the tutorial in. You can then enter quadrants beside yours and complete missions to regain control. Typically one quadrant will have three missions (I think I've seen four,) and each mission can have up to three fights in it (usually two though,) and each fight can have multiple battles where after defeating the first enemy party, another replaces it but your party doesn't recover anything. Usually the last mission will be a boss fight and once you've completed all missions in a quadrant it is freed and now you can enter quadrants beside that one (you usually get a special boost after doing so, like an increase to your friends list, spirit collection size or party limit,) and one quadrant in each zone will feature a zone boss, beating it will allow you to move to another chunk of the map (quadrants have a thicker outline around the whole zone/chunk.)

This is technically a freemium game, but the freemium currency is handled pretty well. You get login bonuses each day (the day starts at 12AM UTC/GMT) and one of them is the currency that you can buy, Destiny Orbs. Sometimes gifts are handed out by the admins, for a variety of reasons. Destiny Orbs do a lot of different things, but I think they're common enough that the services they offer are valued appropriately. Playstation Plus members get 35 orbs for free each month. Destiny Orbs can do stuff like heal your party or summon rarer spirits (and are required for promotions like Knack, Gravity Rush and Toro and Kuro-themed summons) or increase your party limit, there are also some one-use items in a shop screen.

The only implementations of an "energy" concept are that your spirits heal 5 health per minute outside of battle, so you might want to wait before using them again; if a spirit dies, it's unusable for 15 minutes (I assume it revives with 5 health only, I haven't noticed though) and there are some special boss events that have other timing requirements: one is currently going on where, all the monsters you choose start battle with full health (and you can use dead spirits) but each fight against the boss takes one Raid Point. The boss will retain its lost health and you can challenge it as frequently as you want, but after 2 hours it will go away until it randomly appears again after completing a mission. When you're out of Raid Points, you can wait...I think it's 15 minutes for one point, or spend a Destiny Orb to get it back immediately, or 10 orbs for full Raid Points. There are three boss fights that appear in a random order and after you beat it, the next time that specific boss appears it will be one level higher. There are rewards for beating specific bosses at a specific level, or beating X number of raid bosses total.

There are two other currencies. Summon stones are used for Common and Uncommon summons (Destiny Orbs can be used for Rare and Super Rare summons aside from promos) and...Spirit Points? Are used to rent others' leader spirits for battles or to merge spirits (you choose a base spirit, then up to 5 other spirits that will be turned into EXP for the base spirit, the only way to level up spirits in the game.) These things are after battles or for the day's login bonus or dropped randomly from defeated enemies (but you have to win to keep any drops.)

The login bonus I mentioned before can also give you spirits, they can drop in battle too, and once per day you can team up with a "Destined Partner" (the game shows you a list of friends and compatible users, how it determines compatibility is based on astrology and a bunch of other stuff, date or birth, location, etc.) for a free Destiny Summon and each of you will get the resulting spirit. Anything generated from an event reward or login bonus or admin gift appears in an inbox so it doesn't clog up your spirit collection until you choose to accept it. Also at the beginning of each day, you get a fortune (Great Blessing, Blessing, Bad Luck and something worse) which have a variety of little effects, and a certain element gets a bonus for that day (as far as I'm aware, the fortune does nothing when it comes to summoning or getting rewards.) Again all that stuff is supposedly based on astrology and other fortune telling stuff (I reckon compatibility stuff may also take your gaming habits into account, who knows.)

Sending random friend requests in-game is encouraged by the game itself (the friendslist is separate from your PSN one) because you can only trade with friends, rented spirits' support skills function for friends, rental costs are cheaper for friends, and randomly your friends will attack for you (a circle appears over an enemy and you need to tap it before it shrinks to nothing to score the attack.)

One last thing, region is pretty important. The game is split up for the Americas, Europe and Asia, and non-promo summons will only get you spirits from your region (raids are considered promos, I've gotten two Chinese spirits and a Native American one.) Destiny Summons can give you a spirit from either partner's region, and you can trade between regions. It's like a Pokemon game with three versions! There are some generic spirits given out by admins and raids, called Princes, Jokers and Queens of a given element. Those are designed for merging only.

So at the end of the day, the game is really fun, you should download it because it's fucking free, and if you love mythology and folklore, this game's an absolute treat. There's a variety of different artists who contributed to the game (unfortunately the game doesn't tell you who drew what) so there are some different art styles for different spirits, too.

PS if you want to be an awesome person, get some Gravity Rush spirits and I'll trade you advanced spirits for 'em once I get some (trades can only be done between spirits acquired with the same method, so if you get a promo spirit through Destiny Orbs, you can only trade for another promo spirit or an advanced summon spirit. They both have the same 30 Destiny Orb cost.) I've only got Spy Kat, Spy Raven, Gade and Nevi Shaga.


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Pretty fun Vita game, Destiny of Spirits (free to play)
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